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Controversial pub car park housing scheme resurfaces
A CONTROVERSIAL bid to build houses on part of a closed pub’s former car park has returned.
Goldacre Developments wants to build two, three-bedroom detached homes by The General Elliot in Manor Road, South Hinksey.
It was the pub’s car park until it was sold to Goldacre in 2007 and replaced with a new car park at the back. The pub shut in 2008.
A plan for two, four-bedroom houses on the old car park was thrown out by Vale of White Horse District Council in 2008.
It deemed the homes “visually harmful and over dominant” and warned it could lead to increased risk of flooding elsewhere.
It also said the two parking spaces per home were not enough and this could lead to more on-street parking, posing a risk to safety.
The Vale’s conservation officer criticised the new scheme, saying it will have an “adverse impact on the nature and form” of the area.
And a couple who live opposite the site – used by residents for parking – told the council they were twice flooded in 2012.
They wrote: “If this land is built upon and developed there will be no space for the flood water to go, it will be channelled back into the road.”
And they said extra homes will put pressure on a “faulty” sewage system and “result in further significant sewage flooding”.
They also raised concerns about the impact on their home, loss of privacy and extra traffic.
They said of the pub: “Potential buyers could be put off by how close the planned buildings’ walls and windows are to the General Elliott.”
The planning application said while the impact on homes opposite is “unavoidable” it would not be “overbearing”.
A reduction in height from 8.9 metres in the 2008 plan to 7.3 metres has “significantly reduced the bulk of the scheme” it added.
Each home would still have two parking spaces and the risk of flooding is “extremely unlikely”.
They would be 30cm above modelled flood levels so there would be”no negative flood implications”.
Pub owner Vale Brewery, of Brill, near Thame, was not available for comment.
Manor Road resident Adrian Porter said: “It is not appropriate to have it as a waste ground, it would be lovely to have it as a community park.”
But he added: “It does need to be built on, it makes sense to use the land. It looks to be sympathetic to the village.”
The quality manager, 42, said he is continuing efforts to find buyers for the pub and is talking with three parties.
South Hinksey Parish Council chairman Maggie Rawcliffe said members have yet to give a formal view on the plan.
But she said it “seems to be quite sympathetic of the surrounding area”.
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